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Power


Monthly Issue | July 1, 2011

Charting the Wind: Where the Sector Is Headed

Perhaps the most echoed sentiment at the American Wind Energy Association's (AWEA's) WINDPOWER 2011 Conference & Exhibition, which took place May 22 to 25 in Anaheim, Calif., was the call…


Geothermal Projects Race to Meet Incentives Deadlines

At the close of 2009, the U.S. geothermal industry had seen seven new geothermal power plants come online in the previous 12 months. In 2010, only one new power plant…


Emergency Lighting Management System

Thomas & Betts’ Emergi-Lite Nexus Emergency Lighting Management System provides real-time status of the entire emergency lighting and exit-sign system, runs system diagnostics, performs required monthly and annual functional tests,…


Microgrid System Controller

Encorp LLC announced the launch of its Microgrid System Controller, which it says is the industry’s first microgrid system controller to connect onsite synchronous generators with renewable energy assets—such as…


Smart Grid–Ready Small Wind Turbine

Distributed wind generator supplier Southwest Windpower unveiled a small wind turbine for commercial and residential use, the Skystream 600, which it claims is the “most efficient power grid-connected turbine in…


Aerogel Coating for Surface Insulation

Massachusetts-based Cabot Corp. recently introduced Enova, an aerogel that is a new high-performance thermal additive designed specifically for insulation coatings. Enova aerogel is designed for application to surfaces that are…


Self-Recuperative Burner

Eclipse Inc. introduced the TJSR v5 self-recuperative burner for direct-fired furnace heating applications. The advanced burner design combines a high-velocity flame with fuel-saving recuperation. A space-saving integral eductor pulls the…


New Winding Resistance Meter

The Tettex 2293 from Swiss firm Haefely Test AG is the result of extensive research and years of experience testing transformers. A simple one-time-connection system, together with the simultaneous winding…


Spectrophotometer with Radio Frequency Identification

Hach Co. unveiled its DR 3900 spectrophotometer featuring state-of-the-art radio frequency identification (RFID) technology. Hach, which describes the device as being “similar to a GPS telling you when to turn,”…


Sunny Days Ahead for Solar

In the U.S., developers of thermal and photovoltaic solar plants face a number of challenges in their efforts to deploy more utility-scale solar power. Some trends, however, are helping solar…


Utilities Increase Renewable Energy Capacity

Driven by state RPS requirements and the desire to diversify their energy sources, U.S. utilities continue to add more renewable power to their generation portfolios. As a result, they must…


Solid Fuels: Moving Material and Managing Emissions

In today’s solid-fueled power plant, managing emissions and moving materials more defines the task than the traditional work of making megawatts. That’s the message that emerged from the coal and…


Nuclear Power in the Shadow of Fukushima

Risk, risk management, and the specter of Fukushima ran through the nuclear track at May’s ELECTRIC POWER Conference in Chicago. The reality of risk, driven home by the horrendous events…


Consolidation, Market Distortions Underlie Remarks by Industry Executives

If you needed additional proof that the power industry is changing, the ELECTRIC POWER keynote and panel discussions over the past few years have provided it—top-of-mind issues have been significantly…


FERC Surrenders Jurisdiction over Station Power in California

In a surprising decision, a federal agency surrendered some of its regulatory authority—and parts of the industry don’t approve. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission declined to defend its jurisdiction over…


Titanium Tubing Still Going Strong After 40 Years

Since 1972, titanium-tubed power plant surface condensers have been providing corrosion-free service. Recent process advances are making the material suitable for even more applications. Titanium was discovered by British scientist…


The Better Environmental Option: Dry Ash Conversion Technology

After the 2008 incident involving the failure of a large surface impoundment containing wet coal ash, the EPA began investigating all coal-fired power plants employing this wet coal ash management…


Modernizing the Grid, Modernizing Our Industry

David K. Owens, executive vice president, Business Operations Group for the Edison Electric Institute, comments on the progress U.S. utilities are making toward a smarter electrical power grid. Everyone talks…


Defeating Concrete Reinforcing Steel Corrosion

Four concrete cooling towers at a coal-fired electrical generation plant exhibited reinforcing steel corrosion that was causing concrete deterioration. This case study follows the repairs to those towers—how the corrosion…


Hydro: The Forgotten Renewable Rebounds

When President Obama unveiled his “clean energy standard” in the 2011 State of the Union address in February, and again when he spoke of his administration’s energy policy in late…


Underground Coal Gasification: Another Clean Coal Option

Underground coal gasification (UCG) is the gasification of coal in-situ, which involves drilling boreholes into the coal and injecting water/air or water/oxygen mixtures. It combines an extraction process and a…


Using Fossil-Fueled Generation to Accelerate the Deployment of Renewables

Xcel Energy’s coal-fired Cameo Station in southern Colorado ran a pilot program from July 2010 to Dec. 2010 that integrated concentrating solar generation until the Cameo plant was retired at…


Predictive Maintenance That Works

In the April “Focus on O&M,” we began a series of articles on predictive maintenance (PdM), also known as condition-based maintenance. In that article we introduce PdM as a process…


New Opportunities Abound for Retail Electric Suppliers

Following the conclusion of the KEMA conference (see previous story), Mark Axford had the opportunity to talk with Phillip Tonge, recently appointed president of Spark Energy LP. Spark Energy is…


Texas Competitive Model Spreads to Pennsylvania and Illinois

A record 400 attendees participated in KEMA’s 22nd annual Executive Forum in San Antonio, Texas, in late April to debate and discuss the “retail resurgence” of competitive electricity sweeping America.…


California’s New RPS: Opportunity Squandered

In April, California Governor Jerry Brown (D) signed Senate Bill 2 (SB2) into law. When it becomes effective later this year, SB2 will be the primary legislation governing implementation of…


POWER Digest (July 2011)

Indonesia Sees Surge in Contracts for New Power Plants. Indonesia is Southeast Asia’s largest economy, but because it is stricken by chronic power shortages that limit economic growth, the nation’s…


Carbon Trust: Marine Energy Has High Potential but Faces Several Challenges

In a an analysis released this May, nonprofit UK group Carbon Trust admits that there is “still considerable uncertainty as to whether wave and tidal systems will play a meaningful…


Holtec, Westinghouse Roll Out Small Modular Reactor Designs

As the Daiichi nuclear crisis has governments around the world reconsidering their nuclear-heavy energy plans and scrutinizing the safety of existing reactors and third-generation designs, several developers are touting the…


TEPCO: Most Fuel at Daiichi 1 Melted

Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) in May discovered—after calibrating water gauges—that the water level in the reactor pressure vessel of Unit 1 at the quake- and tsunami-ravaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear…


Germany to Shut Down All Nuclear Reactors

Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel at the end of May officially endorsed a plan to shut down all 17 of the nation’s nuclear power plants by 2022. The decision, which gives…


Pushing the 60% Efficiency Gas Turbine Barrier

Gas turbine makers GE, Siemens, and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) in the last week of May separately profiled unprecedented results from development or testing of three innovative combined-cycle gas turbine…


Bad Gas Policy

The late Dr. Carl Sagan once observed, “We live in a society exquisitely dependent on science and technology, in which hardly anyone knows anything about science and technology (S&T).” I…


A Level Playing Field No More

Most regulatory agencies look for ways to extend their reach, often in response to events that directly affect matters squarely within their regulatory purview, but which involve transactions or practices…


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